This Saturday's Preakness Stakes favorite Justify has overcome his bruised heel injury sustained in the Derby, but the French-bred wonder horse Gailo Chop has not been as fortunate for this Friday night's 1¼ mile G1 Doomben Cup in Australia. The 7-year-old stallion has been sidelined from the showpiece event of the Brisbane Racing Carnival's second major racing weekend due to a tendon injury, leaving space for the Anthony Freedman-trained Ambitious to take charge of the race.
Ever since winning the G2 Osaka Hai spectacularly against Japanese superstar Kitasan Black at Hanshin racecourse in April 2016, Ambitious has gone the last two years without a major title. The Japan-bred 6-year-old colt is looking to end that dry patch at Brisbane's Doomben Racecourse this Friday night in the Cup, which runs at 3:40 p.m. Brisbane time on Saturday, May 19th (1:40 a.m. EDT or 10:40 p.m. PDT Friday night in the USA).
In his last nine starts, Ambitious finished seven times outside the top three, including a distant eighth in this year's G1 Queen Elizabeth Stakes. However, he came close to the winner's circle after placing second in the G1 Tancred Stakes behind 2016 Melbourne Cup winner Almandin just two months ago. This has likely helped give Ambitious favorite status in the Doomben Classic (with odds of 7/2).
Freedman Racing Manager Brad Taylor's assessment of Ambitious is measured. “He doesn't face as strong a field as he did in the Queen Elizabeth, but Oregon's Day was pretty impressive the other day, and there's a couple of other nice horses in there,” he says.
The Mick Price-trained Oregon Day, a 4-year-old filly, is also out for her first G1 win. Sky Racing World's Jason Witham believes she is a great bet at 5/1, and that the horse that must be included in all Exotic bet types.
He notes, “She is a 4-year-old mare racing in the form of her career and her dominant win in the [G2] Hollindale [Stakes] last start is a great guide. She galloped strongly at Doomben this week, is drawn to get the perfect run (gate 2) and is suited up to mile and a quarter.”
Witham also suggests that punters throw some long shots into their Exotics throughout the day, especially after Anton En Avant won the G3 Ascot Green Chairman Handicap at Doomben last week against odds of 150/1.
In Gailo Chop's absence in the Doomben Cup, it's up to the enigmatic Tom Melbourne (8/1) to keep alive OTI Racing's chances of victory. Like Ambitious, the Irish-bred 7-year-old is bidding to end a two-year losing run. He came close in this month's G2 Hollindale Stakes after placing second, adding to his astounding record of ten seconds from thirty starts.
Tom Melbourne is just one of the five Doomben Cup runners trained by Chris Waller, whose stable is behind Australia's legendary mare Winx. As in previous editions of the Doomben Cup, Waller has the advantage of numbers on his side, with three more of his horses rounding out the top six: Satono Rasen (11/2), Comin' Through (13/2) and Egg Tart (8/1).
Doomben Cup Day also features two G3 races, the Doomben Roses and the BRC Sprint. All races will be broadcasted live by TVG, featuring expert commentary by Jason Whitham.
ADW platforms such as:
TVG, TwinSpires, Xpressbet, NYRABets, WatchandWager, HPIbet, AmWager, and BetAmerica, are available to US handicappers to live stream and wager on all standard USA bet types on the races from Doomben (AUS-A), Rosehill (AUS-B) and Flemington (AUS-C). Handicappers can also visit skyracingworld.com for free expert picks and past performances.
About David Haslett
A former Managing Director of Sportech Racing, David was appointed President and CEO of Sky Racing World in April 2014. The Louisville, Kentucky-based company, a subsidiary of Australian wagering firm Tabcorp, provides Australian, New Zealand, South African and South Korean racing content for simulcast horse-race wagering to multiple North America-facing ADW brands and race-tracks.
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